The Sophomores: WR Roundtable

roundtable

The Sophomores (WR Roundtable)

Below is a roundtable I conducted with several members of my league, whose opinion I truly value. We take a look at some of the sophomore WRs of the NFL. Heading into the 2nd year is a critical time for these young exciting players. Here are the people that I’ve interviewed:

  • @Drewski_FF (a 9-year dynasty veteran with a sharp mind; rumor is that someone called him a dyno guru)
  • @donnynutz (a self-proclaimed ex-forum troll, who is often correct with his contrarian views)
  • @Dynasty_Al (writer for DFW. His dynasty skills rival the complexity of his last name)
  • @talontalent (no nonsense dynasty owner who knows what he wants, and he wants it now)

Amari Cooper

My questions were focus on some more well-known WRs because they are mostly players drafted high in the NFL draft or can be immediately useful for redraft leagues. So for this round of interview I focused on Amari Cooper, Kevin White, Nelson Agholor, DGB, DeVante Parker, Devin Funchess, Stefon Diggs, Tyler Lockett, & Chris Conley.

1.) What was your impression about [WR] before the 2015 season?

 @donnynutz:

Cooper- stud in the making
White – metrics riser that needed work but high ceiling
Agholor – could be a solid wr2 but not a high ceiling
Dgb – i liked that he would get the chance to grow alongside Mariota
Parker – honestly I wasn’t big on him before last year. i thought he had bust potential
Funchess – I wanted to see him use his big body to his advantage to win consistently
Diggs – I thought he had a chance to put some numbers up early due to a bad WR group in Minny
Lockett – he was a man crush of mine and i thought he could be a great compliment to graham and work well with the other WR
Conley – I thought he would be a decent compliment to Maclin and be the wr2 there

@Dynasty_Al: Cooper was the surest among them while White arguably had the highest upside, followed by Parker.  Funchess I had zero faith in from the jump, at least as a wide receiver. Agholor seemed like a reach in the 1st round, but as an Eagles fan I gave myself hope that he belonged.  DGB I thought undeservedly received the “Troubled Stud” label, where everyone seems high on him and reasons that he would be a stud if it wasn’t for his off-field issues. Newsflash: not every troubled college athlete turns into an elite NFL player (see Lyerla, Colt).

@Drewski_FF:

Amari Cooper –  He was the cream of the crop in this draft. Ran smooth routes and has sure hands. Very good chance to be the WR1 for Oakland from week 1.
Kevin White – Very unrefined. Has loads of potential but who knows what to expect.
Nelson Agholor-  Ran good routes and has sure hands. Fell into a good opportunity with only slot-machine JMatt ahead of him.
Dorial Green-Beckham – HUGE potential, but a lot of risk too. If he can clean up his act he is every bit as talented as Cooper.
DeVante Parker – I didn’t (and still don’t) buy the hype. I don’t think he is anything more than a Stevie Johnson type player
Devin Funchess – Ha! Hate him! Severe concentration issues and the guy doesn’t know how to make an easy catch. Can’t run routes either. Spectacular catch guy or a David Tyree-type.
Stephon Diggs –  I didn’t think he was much, honestly. Could probably beat out CPatt for the slot job in Minnesota, but then again, I could do that too.
Tyler Lockett – He was a Ted Ginn-type. He’d be returning kicks/punts and catching deep balls (or at least attempting to)
Chris Conley – Physical specimen but not much of a WR

 

2.) What surprised you (good and bad) about [WR]’s rookie season?

 @donnynutz:

Cooper – him beating great defenses so early (i.e. Haden and Patrick Peterson) he’s ahead of even what I thought
White – idk injuries i guess but him being out the entire year for an injury like he had was not expected. did he even try to get healthy?
Agholor – drops, drops and more drops. and bad route running. he had the farthest drop of any player on this list for me
Dgb – such a high ypc avg. i thought he’d be in the 13 or 14 range but he had over 17. if he keeps that up he will be big
Parker – he came on late and started to prove me wrong about being a bust.
Funchess – started to use his body some late in season. good sign
Diggs – didn’t expect him to be Teddy’s go to guy
Lockett – he did even better than i expected. to me he’s the wr2 for seahags now. and might pass Baldwin too
Conley – surprised he couldn’t even pass Albert Wilson.

@Dynasty_Al: I did not expect Cooper to be quite as successful as he was, and I certainly didn’t expect Parker to come on as strong as he did at the end of last season.  Diggs was probably the most pleasant surprise, but his hype went out of control following a few strong games before slowly coming back down to earth.

 @Drewski_FF:

Amari Cooper – His elevation to elite status. I love him and he was very productive. But the idea that he is a kid and still learning about the NFL seems to be lost in his valuation at this point.
Kevin White – Nada, he was held out all year. It was surprising to see the Bears so easily part with BMarsh though, and White seemed to play a big part in that
Nelson Agholor – His lack of targets. He was on the field enough, but didn’t get many throws his way
Dorial Green-Beckham – He stayed out of trouble! The rest is meh
DeVante Parker – How long it took him to get on the field. On the positive side though, I did see a stat where he out-targeted Landry over the final 6 games (or so, can’t remember exactly)
Devin Funchess – I was surprised to see how little opportunity he got with KB missing the entire year
Stefon Diggs – His efficiency. He did very well in a pass-first offense with few opportunities
Tyler Lockett – His route running and connection with Wilson. Also, his dedication to the WR position is a very good sign
Chris Conley – Not much, I expected him to be buried on the depth chart as a rookie while he learned to play NFL WR

3.) What would you need to see from [WR] to let you know that he will take the next step forward, thus trying to buy him before his price soars? 

 @donnynutz:

Cooper – price already soared lol. need more of the same
White – already overpriced. I won’t buy likely
Agholor – I would need to get him for a mid-2nd to bother. and even then he got to improve a ton starting with his hands and routes
Dgb – take his high ypc avg and transition that into more catches
Parker – he needs to overtake Landry for me to buy. but by then he’s overpriced. In fact, he kind of is already
Funchess – I’m buying cheap if i can now. i think he takes a step forward this year
Diggs – just needs to build on a good rookie year. not fall off like other Vikings wr
Lockett – once again just take that next step. see the field more and more and be the wr2 over Kearse
Conley – I’m hoping to buy cheap (4th) to someone just cutting bait just to gamble that he turns around

@Dynasty_Al: I need to see Agholor create more consistent separation before I buy into him.  If he can do that, I think he can be the Jeremy Maclin of Doug Pedersen’s offense, but until then I don’t think he is anything more than a boom-or-bust WR3.

@Drewski_FF:

Amari Cooper – Too late for this. If he does anything more than he did in his rookie year, he will continue to be priced out of what I am willing to pay for him
Kevin White – I’d need to see him get a good amount of targets from Cutler and make something happen with them. He is very unknown for me so I need to see him produce on the field for me to really start buying in
Nelson Agholor – I’d need to see him play successfully on the outside. There is a gaping hole there and he could get a lot of looks if he can establish himself there
Dorial Green-Beckham –  DeVante Parker – By the time I see what I need to out of this guy, his price will already be too out-of-control for me to buy. I’d want to see him become an established WR1 to Landry’s WR2 play. Similar to Demayrius and Emmanuel in Denver
Devin Funchess – I don’t think there is anything he can do. My mind is made up. A move to TE after Olsen suffers a career-ending injury in 2016 could pique my interest though.
Stefon Diggs – I’d need to see him hold of Treadwell for the WR1 job in Minnesota, or at least continue to get the majority of the targets
Tyler Lockett – I’d need to see him be the #1 or #2 in targets to get more excited for him this year. He is already pretty high up there for me so him getting more opportunity would solidify that.
Chris Conley – Him solidifying himself as the WR2 in KC. He’d need to show he can do underneath work and not just be a deep threat as well.

Tyler Lockett

John Froschauer – Associated Press

4.) What are some red flags going into the ’16 season that will make you sell [WR]?

@Donnynutz:
Cooper – I won’t sell unless im getting top 5 wr value
White – age and injury makes me wanna sell if i can hype him enough to get my value back
Agholor – I’m selling him if i can break even on him. not as i expected in him
Dgb – injury woes with hammy. its worrisome
Parker – can he take a step up or is he just going to be a fine Kendall Wright type?
Funchess – can he fight his way onto the field over lesser wr
Diggs – was last year a fluke? can Teddy B carry 2 wr with him and Treadwell?
Lockett- will he see the field more? or just stay on return game and half the snaps on offense?
Conley – beat out Albert Wilson already dammit!!! make them not wanna take you off the field

@Dynasty_Al: People are all aboard the Lockett train, but with the Seahawks drafting three running backs this year, it is obvious they don’t want to deviate from their run-oriented offense.  With Jimmy Graham coming back at some point and the team bringing back Jermaine Kearse in addition to Doug Baldwin, it will be difficult for Lockett to emerge as the high-end WR2 many are projecting him as

@Drewski_FF:
Amari Cooper –
His drop issues. If they continue, Carr could start to look elsewhere in clutch situations
Kevin White –
Another injury would put him on my do-not-own list
Nelson Agholor –
Rape charges, if he is convicted he is off all of my rosters. Also, if he continues not to get looks in that offense. There is not enough talent at WR on the Eagles roster for him to have another year like 2015.
Dorial Green-Beckham –
Still waiting for the wheels to fall of and for him to get in trouble. Also has to out-produce his rookie year or I think it will be a disappointing 2016 for him
DeVante Parker –
Getting out-produced by Leonte Carroo in 2016
Devin Funchess –
His inability to move up the depth chart. His continued inability to make a catch when the ball hits him in the numbers
Stefon Diggs –
If he is passed by Treadwell and Charles Johnson
Tyler Lockett –
If he shows that he is just a deep threat and return guy, there is potential for this but Lockett seems committed to being a better WR.
Chris Conley –
He never develops into anything other than a situational deep threat. Being that guy in an Alex Smith-led offense doesn’t offer much opportunity.

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